Ugh.

That's what many of us think when we look outside at this time of year. It's long enough into winter that we're all tired of the cold, but not far enough into winter that we have hope of spring around the corner.

This is the time of year we have to be intentional about creating fun with the season.

Instead of folding paper and trying to create a snowflake that isn't a square or rectangle, coffee filters offer a perfect starting shape. Plus, they're softer and easier to fold for little hands.

Start by folding the filter in half, and in half again as many times as you would like. Then take child-friendly scissors and cut shapes out of your folded filter, without cutting all the way through.

Photo of coffee filter being cut

Then grab some washable markers and shade your coffee filter. It doesn't have to be perfect, and you don't have to do each side.

Photo of blue coffee filter

You can unfold it and see what you have, or you can add a fun extra element. Take your coffee filter to the kitchen and rinse it with a small amount of water. You can see some of the marker drain into the sink.

Photo of colored coffee filter in water

Unfold the filter and let it dry flat on a paper towel for about an hour.

Photo of fake snowflake drying

When you're done, your snowflake will have a beautiful, watercolored effect!

Photo of fake snowflake on window

Even Teddy the turtle approves!Photo of a turtle on the snowflake

You can find other toddler activities, like a giant three-dimensional snowflake, on our blog each week. Post your photos of this craft and your family participating in all our other activities with the hashtag #dcnaturecenter!

(Are all snowflakes unique? Read about it here!)